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The Temple of Pederasty $3.99 $1.00

Author: Ihara Saikaku (completed by John Glassco)

The Pederast and The Samurai... Are The Same Man!

About: Here, in an anthology of exquisite tales about a rarely discussed side of the Samurai, the struggles of the flesh within an ancient and unrelenting code of honor are depicted as only the Japanese know--action-filled, erotic; a glimpse into a forbidden world ruled by the sword and the phallus.

Additional: Based on source tales from the same Saikaku material that Tuttle Publishing derived its "Comrade Loves of the Samurai" from. This peculiar edition supposedly derives more immediately from a hilariously bad, clandestine publication of a 1928 translation, largely of Saikaku's "Glorious Tales of Pederasty." However, in view of Glassco's unique talents, as poet and author of the Victorian-fake extraordinary The English Governess and Fetish Girl, it's quite likely the book emerged more from the pen of Glassco himself, than from anything Saikaku wrote. Owing to the extreme difficulty people have had in finding the title, the Olympia Press is proud to offer this work of gay erotica for all the scholars out there.

Illustrated.

Excerpt:

The night was the sixth of November. It was rather dark, since there was no moon. They crossed the river Kamo by the faint reflected lights of glittering stars in the far-off sky. When they reached the bank they saw a man sitting serenely on a rock. He was wrapped in a wasted overcoat, with an old reed hat on his head. He held an incense burner in his sleeve. He looked quite composed and peaceful.

Toshikiyo asked him, “Dear stranger, why are you alone in such a place so late in the evening?”

The delicious odor of the incense the Shogun had smelt came from this stranger's incense-burner.

The stranger answered quietly, “Oh, I am simply listening to the singing plovers of the river Kamo.”

Toshikiyo was quite impressed by this answer. To listen to plovers at such a place and so late on a cold autumn evening, the man had to possess a very refined culture. He could not be an ordinary common-class man. Toshikiyo said to him in a more polite way this time, “Pardon, sir, my curiosity. I came by the order of my lord the Shogun Yoshimasa to see who is burning such an exquisite incense on such a night. Would you mind telling me, dear sir, who you are?”

The man replied, “I am not a priest who has forsaken all worldly things for Buddha, but I am not an ordinary man either. I am a Wanderer without any settled abode. I am now more than sixty-three years old. Yet both my feet are quite steady, and I can walk freely.” And he rose to his feet and began going towards the pine trees on the river bank.

The answer was very simple yet full of hidden meanings of the old man's character. Toshikiyo was impressed still more deeply, and he asked again, “As I said before, I would like to know the name of the incense you are burning. Please tell me its name. I must inform my lord Yoshimasa.”

“What a bore you are,” said the old man, “to bother me with such trifles! But if your lord is so enthusiastic for incenses, let him have this stick, though there is not much left now. Here it is.” And he went away.

Toshikiyo returned to Yoshimasa with the incense and the burner. And he related all the details about the stranger. The poetical behavior of the old man appealed very deeply to the refined heart of the Shogun, who made search for him all over Kyoto Capital. But no trace of the man could be found. The Shogun was sorry he could not speak to the strange man, and he kept the incense and the burner as precious treasures. He named the incense “The Singing Plover”. Soon the strange story spread among his courtiers.

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This product was added to our catalog on Tuesday 11 May, 2010.
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